Wondering just how much time until the start of the 2021 London Marathon?

... well wonder no more - the count down timer below shows you exactly how much (or how little) time you have left to get in your training.

You're welcome.

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Will YOU be Ready?

  • The 2021 London Marathon race will not take place in April - the new date has been set for the Autumn for the first time in the races history and will take place on Sunday the 3rd October
  • The 2021 London Marathon mass start time is 9:30am (British Summer Time clocks don't change back to GMT until 24th Oct)
  • There are 3 separate start points located in the Blackheath area
  • The 2020 London Marathon mass start was CANCELLED (there was a virtual race and an elites only race on the 4th October - more details below)

Ballot Entry

If you haven't entered the ballot for the 2021 race. You can do that from now until 17:00 (5pm) on Friday the 9th of October.

Be quick - you have until the countdown timer below reaches zero to get your ballot application submitted:

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If the above timer is displaying all zeros - then you've missed your chance to get a ballot entry place for 2021.

If you're still keen to run the London marathon, you may be able to get a place through one of many charities. This will mean that you'll have to commit to raising a set amount in sponsorship money. Which may vary between different charities. But is usually around the £2,000 mark.

The Virgin Money London Marathon

I've included some additional information about this iconic race below to give you a feel for what to expect on race day...

2020 was 40th Anniversary of the London Marathon

That's right - the London Marathon has been a regular fixture in the (Spring) marathon calendar for 4 decades! 2021 will be the 41st and hopefully it will be a mass start event once again, rather than an elite only event plus virtual race for the masses.

8 Week Base Training Plan.

On your mobile phone. 

A simple and very effective base training plan to get you in fantastic condition to train for any endurance running race (great for a marathon). Delivered straight to your mobile phone. Get in tip-top shape to crush your race training and smash that new PB.

  • Phased Plan
  • Explainer Videos
  • Reminder Notifications
  • Strength & Conditioning

    Other race start times

    Whilst the Elite Men's race and the mass start is at 9:30, there are several other races on the same day as follows:

  • 08:40 – Elite Wheelchair Races
  • 08:45 – World Para Athletics Marathon Championships Ambulant Athletes
  • 08:55 – The Elite Women's Race
  • There is also a 3 mile 'mini-marathon' children's (11 to 17 years of age) race that starts at 08:30 

Download a printable marathon day checklist

Want to make sure you arrive at the start line well prepared - with everything you'll need for a less stressful race experience? My handy checklist can help with that...

Course Maps

The London Marathon course takes in some of London's famous landmarks. So, running the race or indeed spectating can be a great opportunity to get in some sight seeing.

I've included the official course map of the entire race below, as well as the more detailed/larger scale maps of the Start and Finish.

Below those you can watch a timelapse video of the entire London Marathon course too.
Virgin-Money-London-Marathon-Course-Map
Virgin_Money_London_Marathon_Start_Map
Virgin-Money-London-Marathon-Finish-Map

Does the London Marathon have a time limit?

Yes it is 8 hours. This is because that is the limit of the road closures that are in place for race day. So the cut-off point is 17:30 (5:30 pm).

How long is the London marathon race?

The London marathon is the official standard distance as all marathons - which is: 

  • 26.2 miles 
  • 42.195 Km
The original date for the 2020 London Marathon was Sunday the 26th April.

Unfortunately, due to the global spread of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) the organisers took the unprecedented step of postponing the race until October and made the official announcement on Friday 13th March.

Two further announcements were made by race director Hugh Brasher on the 19th of June and the 27th of July outlining the intentions to proceed with the event in October.

Finally on the 6th of August the announcement was made to cancel the mass start event and instead hold a 'virtual' race for those runners. However there will still be races for the Elites. But they will take place in a "secure biosphere" in St James' Park.

The organisers have issued some FAQs for anyone who was hoping to take part in the event in October

There was a "Virtual" London Marathon event on the 4th October 2020. Approximately 45,000 runners took part in the virtual race all over the UK and in many other countries around the world.

  • The 2020 London Marathon became an Elites Only race - on Sunday the 4th October
  • The start time for the Mens's Elite race was 10:15am
  • For the men's race both Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele were due to take part. Being touted as quite the duel as they're the only two human's to have completed an official marathon in under 2 hours and 2 minutes! I for one was very keen to watch the event live on the BBC.
  • Unfortunately Bekele had to pull out due to injury so did not take part in the 2020 elites only race. 
  • Kipchoge had an "off day" too and only managed an 8th place finish. Albeit in a very respectable time of 2:06:49. Sadly his unparalleled winning streak was broken. But as disappointed as I'm sure he was, I'm also sure he will bounce back. 

Do you want an easy to follow and complete marathon training system?

  • Are you confused about how to best train to for your next marathon?
  • Want to add strength training or mental toughness training - but don't know how?
  • Do you want to make sure your nutrition and recovery are optimised (you should)?
  • Not sure how to carb-load properly?
  • Would you like the support and guidance of an experienced running coach?

If the answer to any of the above is YES, then you would benefit from the Marathon Success System. A fresh and unique online group coaching programme.


Providing that London gets approval to go ahead in October 2021 as currently planned. The programme will start at the end of July 2021 - in time for those running an Autumn marathon (like London).


If you'd like to know more about it and get a chance to be part of this ground breaking, complete, holistic training system  -  click the button below.

Did you find this information useful? Don't miss out on getting more valuable information and marathon training advice - sign-up to the Running Directions newsletter if you haven't done so already.

About the author 

Coach D

Hi, I'm Dave. I'm a UK Athletics qualified and licensed Coach in Running Fitness (CiRF), Endurance Event Group Coach and Certified Running Technique Coach. I coach groups and individuals of all abilities both online and in person.I particularly enjoy coaching beginner and improver runners in the 40+ age range.I'm also a regular recreational runner and I've been competing in races from 5k to marathon distance for over 30 years.

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The Able Runner


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